We are kicking off the holiday months with a whopper of a First Friday in November! Celebrate with us! It’s all about family in all its forms, particularly those we have lost that remain lively in our memories and close to our hearts! On All Soul’s Day, November 2nd, we will honor SOULS with a bit of whimsy and lots of creativity, marching through the Oregon District (5th Street) with a family-festive Parade, all the way to Dutoit for a dance performance and reception! Imagine a cool, autumn evening, full of lights and the magic of memorial, drawn beautifully from the Mexican tradition of Day of the Dead!
In Mexico, el Día de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead) welcomes the souls of loved ones, who return each year on November 1 and 2 (All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day) to enjoy for a few hours the pleasures they once knew in life. Elaborate ofrendas—altars—erected in cemeteries and private homes afford friends and family the opportunity to reunite and celebrate with the departed. What was once a pre-Hispanic religious tradition was transformed by the introduction of Catholicism in Colonial Mexico.
Once more, the tradition morphs itself as it becomes part of Dayton’s celebration of diversity emanating from the city’s Immigrant Friendly Initiative. Missing Peace Art Space and Culture Builds Community are hosting an all-inclusive celebration seeking to unite our diverse populations in the common theme of celebrating departed loved ones. Through this event, community members – including you – are invited to explore this long-held Hispanic tradition.
Join us on Saturday, October 13 from 1 – 5 pm to create items for the community ofrenda, guided by artist Gabriela Pickett. We are also accepting submissions that you make elsewhere for the non-juried, community exhibition. All works that fit the theme of the Mexican Day of the Dead will be accepted, unless there is a safety issue. The community ofrenda is family-oriented, so please refrain from inappropriate material and keep submissions in good taste.
The parade is free and open to all on November 2nd! Participants will line up on Wyandot, behind Arby’s and Hauer Music, for a 6:00pm start down 5th St. This parade will lead to the Reception Performance in the outdoor space at Missing Peace Art Space, featuring works in dance and prose created for this event by students from Cityfolk’s Culture Builds Community residency. Schools/programs included: Stivers School for the Arts, Chaminade Julienne High School, St Albert’s School, East End Community Center and the Hispanic Catholic Ministries After-School teen program. The parade will include life-sized skeleton puppets, a rolling musical sculpture, parade lanterns, innovative musical instruments, written work and paintings on large, bamboo parade frames, dancers and more! The community altar will be on display inside Missing Peace Art Space through November.
Culture Builds Community residency artists are Michael Bashaw, Gabriela Pickett, Joy Levett, Rodney Veal and DeShona Pepper-Robertson. Many other artists from the Greater Dayton area will participate in the “ofrenda.” You can, too!!!!
Missing Peace Art Space is looking for volunteers to help with various aspects of this community-driven exhibition from now until November 2. Please contact them at (937) 241- 4353 if you’d like to volunteer. Also – supply donations for the large puppets would be gratefully accepted anytime: newspaper, flour and glue. Call for details on where to drop off donations!!